MATTHEW 1: 23
Emmanuel: It is a compound word of (El) “God” and (Emmanu) “with us”. Jesus, who is God in our nature, the Word that was made flesh and dwelt among us (Jn. 1:14), and is one and only Mediator between God and us (1 Tim.2:5)
1. Emmanuel means God’s intimacy with men
Emmanuel reminds us two OT themes:
First theme is classical form: “I will be your God and you will be my people”
The second theme is glory or presence of God (Shekinah). Here Mathew identifies the Shekinah with a person called Jesus (1 Kings 8:27). The first one is covenantal relationship and the second one is participatory relationship.
Emmanuel was not a new name, it was an experience by Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, Moses and Israelite. Gen. 28:15 ‘I am with you’. Ex.33:14 ‘my presence will go with you’. Deut.20:1 ‘while you go for a war, I will be with you’. Isaiah 43:2 ‘when you pass through waters and fire, I will be with you’.
God was with Enoch; God was with Noah. God was with Joseph in the pit, in the prison and in the palace (Gen 37:24, 39:2, 21).
God was with David while he was with cattle and while he was hiding in the caves and when he was in the royal cabins.
God was with three friends of Daniel in the royal courts, training schools and in the brutal furnace.
Jesus was with the persecuted Christians, he was with Paul and Silas when they were in the prisons, when Paul had shipwreck, He was with him.
Today God is with us in our successes, victories, loneliness and lowliness. His grace is all sufficient for us. He is EMMANUEL in the NEW Year.
2. Emmanuel means God’s intervention in men’s life
Secondly, Emmanuel is not only a relationship with God also it makes us to recognize his characters and its utility in our day to day life God with us through every action of our life; we begin, continue and end in His name. He intervenes.
He is God with us to comfort, enlighten, protect and defend us in every time of temptation and trial. A Kenyan preacher said, ‘What God do, no man can do’. Expect powerful and timely interventions from the Most High in Year 2020.
Ev. Samuel Ng’ang’a,